English Literature from the Anglo-Saxon period, English homework help

1. English Literature from the Anglo-Saxon period

 a. reflected oral poetry.
 b. recorded historical facts only.
 c. always used rhyming verse.
 d. was never expressed orally.

2. A scop was a person who

a. denounced poetry as immoral.
 b. denounced poetry as historically inaccurate.
 c. knew nothing about poetry.
 d. recited poetry and kept track of a tribe’s historical information.

3. “The Seafarer” differs from Beowulf because

 a. “The Seafarer” says that one must do no harm and be humble.
 b. “The Seafarer” is an epic tale of conquest.
 c. Beowulf regrets that good can never triumph over evil.
 d. Beowulf denounces warfare under any circumstances.

4. Why does the Seafarer enjoy the sea?

 a. He feels an unexplainable joy and excitement when sailing.

 b. He is free from his responsibilities on land.
 c. He can forget his lost love when he is at sea.
 d. He wants to prove his loyalty to his lord by enduring hardship.

5. According to lines 68–71 of “The Seafarer,” what is the speaker’s view of death?

 a. People can triumph over death with determination and hard work.
 b. Death is counterproductive to the will of God and Fate.
 c. A force beyond human control decides matters of life and death.
 d. Religious people do not die.

6. The fear that the speaker refers to in lines 41–42 of “The Seafarer” is an admission that 

 a. the Seafarer hates being a sailor.
 b. the Seafarer is cowardly.
 c. the Seafarer lacks faith in a higher power.
 d. a higher power is in control.

7. The first part of “The Seafarer” is the story of

 a. a man’s life on the sea.
 b. a sailor’s conversion to Christianity. 
 c. an exile’s lament for his country.
 d. an ocean storm off the coast of England.

8. What is the reason, despite all the hardships he has suffered, that the speaker in “The Seafarer” continues to follow the life of the sea?

 a. weary fatalism
 b. passionate curiosity
 c. religious vision
 d. material desires

9. According to “The Seafarer,” what happens to earthly success?

 a. Wealth and glory fade in a brief time.
 b. God punishes injustices committed by the wealthy.
 c. Fate rewards the righteous with wealth and glory.
 d. Wealthy people have greater responsibility.

10. Which of the following best describes the speaker’s message at the end of “The Seafarer”?

 a. Life at sea is both exhilarating and wearisome.
 b. Gifts of gold for heaven will not redeem a sinful soul.
 c. Those who walk with God shall be rewarded.
 d. The earth no longer flourishes in glory.

11. When reading Anglo-Saxon poetry, how does recognizing historical context help a reader understand why certain things happen?

 a. It gives the reader clues about the situation of the time in which the work was written.
 b. It helps readers restate in their own words what the poem says.
 c. It requires readers to use a dictionary to find the meanings of complicated words.
 d. It shows the reader how important correct spelling and grammar are.

12. Which element in “The Seafarer” is most characteristic of lyric poetry?

 a. regular rhythm and rhyme
 b. strong reliance on figurative language
 c. intense personal emotion
 d. narrative structure

13. The phrase “summer’s sentinel,” meaning a cuckoo, is an example of

 a. a kenning.
 b. a predicate.
 c. assonance.
 d. caesura.

14. In “The Seafarer,” the speaker finds comfort by

 a. accepting that the material world will fade away.
 b. losing faith in God and Fate.
 c. retiring from life at sea.
 d. realizing that earthly life is all that exists.

15. Who does Grendel’s mother kill to avenge the death of her son?

 a. Beowulf
 b. Hrothgar’s friend
 c. Hrothgar
 d. Wiglaf

16. When he says that God will decide the winner in the fight with Grendel, Beowulf

 a. expresses a wish to die.
 b. means that he is tired of fighting.
 c. shows that he respects Grendel.
 d. reaffirms his righteousness by respecting God’s will.

17. How do you know that Beowulf is an honorable man?

 a. He is willing to risk his life in order to earn fame by killing Grendel.
 b. He is known as a follower and cousin of Higlac.
 c. His father was the great Edgetho, a famous warrior.
 d. He refuses to use a sword to fight Grendel because Grendel has none.

18. Why does Beowulf come to see Hrothgar?

 a. He wants to help Hrothgar by killing Grendel.
 b. He has been sent into exile by the king of Geatland.
 c. He needs Hrothgar’s help against an enemy.
 d. He comes to seek shelter in Hrothgar’s hall.

19. If you interpret Beowulf as a statement about corruption, with Grendel representing organized crime and the mead hall representing society, you are accepting the poem as a(n) 

 a. metaphor.
 b. symbol.
 c. allegory.
 d. kenning.

20. After he becomes king of the Geats, Beowulf

 a. continues to fight for what he believes is right.
 b. becomes greedy and selfish.
 c. lets younger warriors defend his kingdom.
 d. loses his courage.

21. Read the following line from Beowulf and determine its meaning: “The monster’s / Thoughts were as quick as his greed or his claws . . .”

 a. He is hungry.
 b. He has intelligence.
 c. He has sharp claws.
 d. He is not trustworthy.

22. Why is it ironic that after his death the Geats build a tower to memorialize Beowulf?

 a. Beowulf requested that the tower be built.
 b. The treasure is left in the tower.
 c. Beowulf’s body has been cremated.
 d. Most of the Geats had deserted him in battle.

23. Read the following quotation from Beowulf and choose the best way to paraphrase the bolded words: “. . . they could hack at Grendel / From every side, trying to open / A path for his evil soul, but their points / Could not hurt him . . . .”

 a. to kill him
 b. to drive him out of the hall
 c. to turn his soul to God
 d. to help him escape

24. Beowulf finally dies

 a. after a fight with a dragon.
 b. as the result of a spell cast by Grendel’s mother. 
 c. in a fight with Wiglaf.
 d. after being stabbed in the back by one of his men.

25. What weapon does Beowulf use to kill Grendel?

 a. his sword
 b. his hands
 c. a dagger
 d. a lance

26. To what does the poet give credit for Beowulf’s victory over Grendel’s mother?

 a. God’s judgment
 b. Beowulf’s kindness
 c. good luck
 d. Beowulf’s powerful grip

27. How do you know that Beowulf is an epic poem?

 a. It is a poem about terrible monsters and dragons.
 b. It is a long poem that tells a story about a legendary hero.
 c. It tells about real events and real people of long ago.
 d. It was not written down at first but told by storytellers.

28. Why does Bede include a quotation from the Scots in A History of the English Church and People?

 a. He is trying to flatter the Scots.
 b. He wants to show how unreasonable the Scots were.
 c. He wants to provide a complete account of the British Isles.
 d. He has read the quotation in another work.

29. Which statement best describes the Venerable Bede?

 a. He claimed to have had mystic visions.
 b. He encouraged laws against pagan practices.
 c. He claimed to be the reincarnation of Saint John the Apostle.
 d. He wrote many historical accounts from a Christian perspective.

30. Bede performed a valuable function because he

 a. translated the works of the Greeks into Old English.
 b. translated the Bible into rustic Latin.
 c. protested the use of the vernacular.
 d. generated a history of Britain for the world.

31. According to Bede, who settled on the north end of Britain?

 a. the Scots
 b. the Picts
 c. the Britons
 d. the Irish

32. Why does Bede go into such detail in A History of the English Church and People to describe the kinds of shellfish found in Britain?

 a. He knows his readers are interested in the fish of the seacoast.
 b. He wants to show how varied and rich the waters of Britain are.
 c. He wants readers to know the Britons are well nourished.
 d. He is stressing the importance of the seacoast. 

33. What keeps Bede from being completely accurate in his A History of the English Church and People?

 a. He sometimes accepted unlikely stories as true.
 b. He usually did not tell where he got information.
 c. Much of his information comes from his own observations.
 d. He used the limited resources available to him at the time.

34. What does Bede feel most unifies the people of Britain in A History of the English Church and People?

 a. their love of the land
 b. their fear of the Picts
 c. their desire for peace
 d. their belief in and study of God’s truth

35. How does Ireland’s climate compare to Britain’s in A History of the English Church and People?

 a. It is much colder.
 b. It is much wetter.
 c. It is more variable.
 d. It is superior.

36. According to Bede, what is true of Ireland?

 a. It is the largest island.
 b. It gets lots of snow.
 c. It does not have any snakes.
 d. The climate is too warm.

37. Read these quotations from A History of the English Church and People. Based on the details they provide, which quotation is probably the most historically accurate?

 a. “I have heard that folk suffering from snakebite have drunk water in which scrapings from the leaves of books from Ireland have been steeped . . .”
 b. “On the opposite side of Britain, which lies open to the boundless ocean, lie the isles of the Orcades.”
 c. “As Saint Basil says: ‘Water receives its heat when it flows across certain metals, and becomes hot . . .’”
 d. “. . . almost everything in this isle enjoys immunity to poison . . .”

38. What was a reason Bede had for writing A History of the English Church and People?

 a. to compare Britain and Ireland
 b. to identify the languages spoken
 c. to describe the geography of Britain
 d. to record the history of Britain

39. Considering the time in which he wrote, which source would probably have provided Bede with the most reliable information that Britain had “twenty-eight noble cities”?

 a. personal experience
 b. testimony from sailors
 c. records from a monastic library
 d. accounts in letters

40. Which of the following seems to lend the greatest credibility to Bede’s work?

 a. the large amount of factual, specific, information
 b. his personal observations on climate
 c. the references to religion in Britain
 d. his descriptions of different customs

Determine whether each statement is true or false.

41. Comitatus refers to the social structure of Anglo-Saxon society.

 a. true
 b. false

42. An elegy is a poem that laments hardships and mourns the loss of a better time.

 a. true
 b. false

43. An epic is a long poem with a larger-than-life hero.

 a. true
 b. false

44. Vernacular refers to a language spoken by common people.

 a. true
 b. false

45. Beowulf kills Grendel by ripping his arm out by the roots.

 a. true
 b. false

46. Grendel attacks Beowulf to avenge the death of Grendel’s mother.

 a. true
 b. false

47. The vowel sounds of Old English are very different from those of modern English.

 a. true
 b. false

48. The base language for English, German, French, and Spanish is Indo-European.

 a. true
 b. false

49. Anglo-Saxon poetry was an oral as well as a written art.

 a. true
 b. false

50. Old English is a Germanic language.

 a. true
 b. false

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